4 years ago

Glucocorticoid Signaling in Health and Disease: Insights from Tissue-Specific GR Knockout Mice.

DeFranco, Whirledge
Glucocorticoids are adrenally produced hormones critically involved in development, general physiology, and control of inflammation. Since their discovery, glucocorticoids have been widely utilized to treat a variety of inflammatory conditions. However, high doses or prolonged use leads to a number of side-effects throughout the body, which preclude their clinical utility. The primary actions of glucocorticoids are mediated by the glucocorticoid receptor (GR), a transcription factor that regulates many complex signaling pathways. Although GR is nearly ubiquitous throughout the body, glucocorticoids exhibit cell- and tissue-specific effects. For example, glucocorticoids stimulate glucose production in the liver, reduce glucose uptake in the skeletal muscle, and decrease insulin secretion from the pancreatic β-cells. Mouse models represent an important approach to understanding the dynamic functions of GR signaling in normal physiology, disease, and resistance. In that absence of a viable GR null model, gene-targeting techniques utilizing promoter driven recombination have provided an opportunity to characterize the tissue-specific actions of GR. The aim of the present review is to describe the organ systems in which GR has been conditionally deleted and summarize the functions ascribed to glucocorticoid action in those tissues.

Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.1210/en.2017-00728

DOI: 10.1210/en.2017-00728

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